April 9, 2010

Spring Forward 15k report

Spring Forward Sunday is always one of my favorite days of the year. Usually its great weather out, the sun is shining. Normally its warm enough out to run in shorts and the race is a challenging event and distance that it is a real test of the legs for the early season fitness. This year was no different.

I’ve done this same race for the last 4 years because I love it. The course is roller and relentless roller in and around Mendon Ponds Park and it’s just one that I enjoy. Race day came and I was running high off of a rest week and excellent result the week prior at the Johnny’s race. In the years past, I’ve gone:

57:47 – 2007
55:08 – 2008
56:33 – 2009
53:28 – 2010

Yes that was a spoiler alert for the result for this year, but since it’s my blog and not many people read it, I don’t care. You’ll see a general downward trend in the past 4 years (minus 2009 where I had a chest infection during the race) I was REALLY pleased with my result this year and the pace that I was able to hold too. But before I get into all of that, lets start at the beginning.
There were a ton of folks milling around the start of this race and it’s a great season opener for most folks to test their meddle in longer course running. There was however one runner absent from the mix that I really wish would’ve joined in the fun and that was Dr. Carl Johnston, or CJ, as we affectionately refer to him. He is an excellent competitor and I know he always drives me to run the absolute best I can (mainly because I’m always trying to keep up!) but I know there will be other races where our paths will cross, so I’m not worried :o)

Anyway, we start off and I’m not too comfortable with the first mile, I was trying to stay in contact with the lead runners (Neal H, Ryan Pauling, Dave Bradshaw) and I don’t know why, we’re just going out at a similar pace, which is frightening because I know I likely won’t be able to keep up! But I hit the first mile in 5:21 and it was quick. I immediately began to settle in and strolled thru the 5km mark in approximately 17:1X.

I was loosening up and starting to get into my groove. I kept on clicking off the miles and wanted to average 5:50’s but was going consistently under that barrier. I had a cushion of about 20 seconds at the 5km mark and it was growing. Going into this race I predicted being in the 54:30 range and just wanted to PR, little did I know I was going to lower that mark substantially.

Running thru the 10km mark, I was running about 200 yards behind Marcus Gage and a stray dog decided to come barking right up to Marcus. He had to stop and make sure the dog wasn’t going to attack him. Immediately after that a grey truck came and swerved RIGHT at Marcus. It was kind of scary, but a sharp realization that this is real and roads are not closed. I made it thru in a PR fashion which was a nice surprise. The kicker came at mile 7-8 when I heard Mike Insler coming up on me and couldn’t really do too much about it.
The pass was inevitable, and I tried to hang on, but was running out of steam. We entered the park again and made our way to the finish. I was REALLY surprised when we hit the line and he was about 10 seconds in front of me. I PR’ed by over 90 seconds from my college PR (ran at the Boilermaker in 2002) and was stoked to finish strong.

Next up is the Bloomfield Road Race, which is a change of pace from the normal, but a good way to work on my weakness….the bike. We’ll see how I fare there! I’ll see you folks out on the roads since we’ve got good weather now. Cheers!


Tim said...

I did a 5km in 17:1X not too long ago. But my race fell apart when I flatted. Hey Travis, what are the two sexiest animals on the farm?

Travis said...

I don't think that joke does well in print, you don't get the full effect! CHIRP!

Mike said...

Hey man,

I'm digging the blog--saw it linked in your signature from the Rochester Running forum.

I actually just started a similar one. (insler.blogspot.com)

Congrats again on the huge PR and hope to see you around at some more races.